Frilled Shark With 300 Teeth Caught Off Australia

It's described as a 'living fossil'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 21, 2015 9:49 PM CST
Updated Jan 22, 2015 1:03 AM CST
Rare, Scary 'Living Fossil' Shark Caught
This frilled shark was caught off the coast of Victoria, Australia.   (South East Trawl Fishing Industry Association)

(Newser) – Fishermen off the coast of Australia were startled to haul in something none of them had ever seen before: a rare species of "living fossil" shark virtually unchanged since before dinosaurs went extinct. The frilled shark they caught was around 5 feet long, almost as big as they get, reports Discovery. The creature, whose species dates back 80 million years, has a long, eel-like body with three fins on the back and has 300 teeth in 25 rows.

story continues below

"Once you're in that mouth, you're not coming out," a spokesman for the South East Trawl Fishing Industry Association tells ABC Rural. "Good for dentists, but it is a freaky thing. I don't think you would want to show it to little children before they went to bed." He says the rare beast, which is now with a local museum, was caught at a depth where most trawlers don't fish, so there is little danger of repeat catches. "This guy was just unlucky," he says. (Scientists recently identified a prehistoric Scottish sea monster that resembles a "sinister dolphin.")

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.